Drone Rules 2021: Centre eases rules for usage of drones

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Drone Rules 2021: Centre eases rules for usage of drones
Drone Rules 2021: Centre eases rules for usage of drones

26 Aug 2021: Drone Rules 2021: Centre eases rules for usage of drones

The Centre on Thursday passed the Drone Rules 2021 to "liberalize" the norms governing drone usage in India. The new rules will replace Unmanned Aircraft Systems Rules 2021 that the government had described as "restrictive in nature" and involving "a lot of paperwork." With a set of relaxations and simplifying procedures, the new rules aim to reduce the compliance burden in operating a drone.

Quote: Air taxis possible under new drone rules: Scindia

Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia told reporters the time is not far when air taxis will ply in the Indian airspace like Uber and Ola. "Air taxis are being researched and invented globally and many start-ups are coming up," Scindia said, "The time is not far when taxis—like the ones of Uber, etc., that you see on the roads—will be seen in the air..."

Rules: No security clearance required to operate drones

According to the new rules, no security clearance will be required before any registration or license issuance for the operation of drones. The government has also reduced the fee to operate a drone to nominal levels. The coverage of drones under the new rules has been increased from 300 kg to 500 kg to include heavy payload-carrying drones and drone taxis, the government added.

Fact: Which norms have been abolished under the new rules?

Some previously mandated norms have been abolished under the new rules. These include a unique authorization number, a unique prototype identification number, a certificate of conformance, a certificate of maintenance, operator permits, an authorization of Research and Development organization, and a remote pilot instructor authorization.

Airspace: Interactive airspace map with red, yellow, green zones

The government said an interactive airspace map with green, yellow, and red zones will be displayed on the Digital Sky platform. The yellow zone—previously 45 kilometers from the airport zone—has now been reduced to 12 kilometers. No permission will be required for operating drones in green zones (beyond 12 km) and up to 200 feet elevation between 8-12 km from the airport zone.

Features: What are the other key features of the new policy?

Under the new rules, no pilot license will be required for operating nano drones and micro drones for non-commercial use. The maximum penalty is now a reduced Rs. 1 lakh. However, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) will regulate the import of drones. Further, an Unmanned Aircraft Systems Promotion Council will pave the way for a business-friendly regulatory regime.

Procedure: Rules seek to simplify drone operating procedure

Online registrations of all drones will be done through the Digital Sky Platform. The government has also reduced the number of forms and permissions from 25 to five and the types of fees from 72 to four. Further, drone corridors will be developed specifically for cargo deliveries. Authorized drone schools will carry out all training and examination.

License: DGCA to issue remote pilot licenses within 15 days

The new rules state that the Director General of Civil Aviation will prescribe drone training requirements, oversee drone schools, and provide pilot licenses online. Remote pilot licenses will be issued by the DGCA within 15 days of the pilot receiving the remote pilot certificate from the authorized drone school through the Digital Sky platform. The requirement of import clearance from the DGCA was abolished.

Fact: Safety, security features to be notified later

The government said the safety and security features like 'No Permission-No Take-off' (NPNT), real-time tracking beacon, geo-fencing, etc., will be notified in the future. A minimum period of six months will be provided for compliance, the government added.

The news article, Drone Rules 2021: Centre eases rules for usage of drones appeared first on NewsBytes.

Also see: Government increases flight capacity; airfare to rise by 12%
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